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The Early March Day (An Homage To Mary Oliver and her poems “Why I Wake Early” and “The Summer Day”)

March 10, 2016



Mary Oliver teaches me

in each sweet beat of her poetry

to spend the morning in nature,

glide into the pace of dew,

attend to the chatter of frogs,

chart the soil with seeds,

channel intentions of deeds,

and simply, pay attention.


So I dawn into this day,

enter the classroom of gardens

merge my heart into magnolia

renew my vows of vision,

clear away last season’s straw to

trumpet the March of green and blast

daffodil sunshine into sight.


I see the wisdom of the bright

red bird in the winter-bare wisteria

perching at the center

of the cardinal directions

chirping at the edge of equinox


The volunteer violet crocus beckons me, wakens

the bed of chocolate mint and pine-needle umber carpet

quilted with petaled cones.


I feed the goats, and together we chew on the calm quiet.


Ducks dip their heads beneath the pond’s surface

elongate their necks and stretch their wings,

create perfectly concentric ripples reflecting a wavy oak.


How have I forgotten how


How water, earth, air and sun

sustain me, hold me, feed me?


How as farms provide food for the body,

my gardens nourish my spirit.


How when I start the day this way,

“…I start the day

in happiness, in kindness”


How I find myself

remembering this



I am practicing to be

as grounded and observant as you,

Mary Oliver. That your ritual

is your daily bread, your daily prayer,

your daily walk, your daily poem

teaches me essential beauty of daily practice

to walk my path of being me

and honor this “one wild and precious life.”

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